You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe



Debate over Marathon attacks as terrorism doesn’t help

The bomb explosions at the Boston Marathon were a form of terrorism, by most definitions of the term. The devices that went off near the finish line Monday were obviously designed to harm innocent people, and also to create chaos and fear among the broader public.

Yet simply denouncing the incidents as terrorism, or demanding that others do so, doesn’t help the investigation. Was the bombing the work of a single deranged plotter, domestic extremists, or an organized group overseas? Why did the perpetrator or perpetrators target Boston? Will they try to strike again, and when? These are the questions that matter, and the terms that news organizations or elected leaders use in describing the Marathon attack should not alter the response one iota.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week